Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Judical Misconduct Charges May Proceed

From the web page of the New York Commission on Judicial Conduct:

Salina Town Court Justice Andrew N. Piraino (Onondaga County)  brought a petition in State Supreme Court to stop the Commission from  proceeding against him on formal disciplinary charges. 

The judge and his lawyer filed the petition in the name of “John  Doe.”

The matter was assigned to Supreme Court Justice John C. Cherundolo in Syracuse.

On February 7, 2011, Justice Cherundolo signed a temporary  restraining order enjoining the Commission from any further proceedings and  ordering that the matter be sealed pending a final determination.

After written submissions from the parties, Justice Cherundolo  dismissed the petition in its entirety in a decision dated April 26, 2011, and  an Order dated May 12, 2011.  His Order  directed that the matter be unsealed and that the caption be changed to reflect  the real name of the petitioner: Andrew  N. Piraino v. New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

Subsequently, Justice Cherundolo granted Judge Piraino's motion to reconsider and issued a second order that inter alia reversed his first ruling, reinstated the petition, restyled the caption as John Doe v New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct, reinstated the Temporary Restraining Order against the Commission, and ordered  the Commission to produce volumes of information and material ostensibly going to the merits of the underlying disciplinary charges against Judge Piraino.

The Commission appealed to the Appellate Division, Fourth Department, which issued a Memorandum and Order dated November 9, 2012, in the Commission's favor, unanimously reversing Justice Cherundolo's second Order, reinstating his original order and dismissing Judge Piraino's Article 78 petition.

The order of the Appellate Division is linked here. (Mike Frisch)

Judicial Ethics and the Courts | Permalink

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